7 Eyebrow-Raising Facts About Hemp (Sit Down for #5)

What doesn’t hemp do? With the sheer number of things hemp has going for it, and what it can do for the human body, we feel like that’s a legitimate question. Hemp seems like this crazy, endless fount of nature’s best, most surprising qualities. You may be something of a hemp guru, but see if this list can’t tell you something you didn’t know about your favorite leafy green power plant.

#1 Hemp is a Hero Among Herbs

Hemp’s roots are so deep that it can grow healthy and full in a wide range of soil & terrain types. We love this about hemp—the hardy super seed with deep literal and historical roots!

In fact, where most plants depend on the soil for structure, hemp can actually hold the soil together while increasing its vital microbes.

By the time it’s harvested, hemp’s leaves & stem are so nutritious that a lot of farmers actually return what they don’t use to the soil, rejuvenating the earth and working toward next year’s yield, which is then likely to be even bigger. What a crop!

#2 Toxic Metals are No Match for Hemp’s Might

Studies indicate that hemp can basically just delete certain radioactive metals from the environment. Scientists planted it At Chernobyl, hemp was planted in some of the irradiated surroundings. It was found that, believe it or not, hemp performed a key function known as “phytoremediation,” which hugely relieved the soil of toxic content. In other words, hemp not only good for you – it’s good for the dirt too!

#3 What Hemp and Breast Milk Have in Common

Human breast milk has something called “gamma linolenic acid” (GLA), which is an important factor in its nutritional value for infants. Guess which of your favorite plants features the very same substance! Hemp seed has an oil with lots and lots of GLA embedded, not to mention a few other vital, healthy fatty acids too. In other words, that hemp oil is even healthier than most vegetable oils!

#4 This is NOT the First Time in History That Hemp Has Been a Legal Consumable

It feels like we’re at the edge of some brand-new horizon with the Farm Bill’s role in legalizing industrial hemp for U.S. citizens. But in the U.S., hemp wasn’t actually prohibited until the 1950s!

Can you believe it?

In WWII, when Japanese hemp supplies got cut off, the Department of Agriculture kicked off its famous campaign known as “Hemp for Victory,” which promoted hemp as the crop we needed for a ton of different material purposes. You might mark this campaign as hemp’s earliest steps toward re-entering the world of the legal and socially acceptable.

farmer gathering crop

#5 Hemp Hampers Carbon Emissions

Not to get political, but it’s true that hemp is fully capable of playing a role in the reduction of carbon emissions. It can do this not only by replacing certain sources of emission but by actually taking the existing emissions and reducing them. Hemp has an extremely high uptake of carbon dioxide, which leads to something called carbon sequestration, the capturing of carbon emissions. A single ton of hemp can eat up 1.63 tons of carbon output.

#6 It’s Inhumanly Strong

Henry Ford once debuted an actual motor vehicle made from plastics, soybean, and… Hemp. This supercar was literally both stronger and lighter than steel, able to withstand 10x the strength of impact without denting. Hemp has even gained popularity in the home-building world. That’s because hemp walls tend to be resistant—if not outright immune to—rot, pests, mold, and fire. They’re also biodegradable and can last up to 500 years. 

#7 Speaking of Cars…

Hemp seed’s famous oil can actually be turned into a kind of non-toxic biodiesel. Yes, you read that right. When fermented, hemp stalk can be translated into ethanol and methanol. To be fair, it’s not the most efficient fuel alternative out there, but still… It’s like, if you can do everything else that hemp does, and you can still be a damn fuel source for motor vehicles, that’s a win in our book.

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